Skip to comments.Major discovery on eve of obelisk’s return (Ethiopia)
Posted on 07/01/2005 11:39:44 PM PDT by nickcarraway
An important discovery has been made by Unesco archaeologists who were sent to Ethiopia to prepare for the arrival of an ancient obelisk finally returned by Italy after years of delay. At the ancient site of Axum, underground chambers and arcades were found near the original position of the obelisk, beneath an area converted into a parking lot in 1963. The Unesco team, headed by Neapolitan archaeologist Rodolfo Fattovich, found that the site had been a royal necropolis for several dynasties before the kingdom adopted Christianity in around 325 AD. Unesco director-general Koïchiro Matsuura announced that some of the tombs appeared to be intact. Archaeological excavations would now be required to uncover possible vestiges of major historical interest, he added. Axum, which dates from 100 BC, was inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1980. The discovery, announced last month, was made in the central area of Axum, where the obelisk removed to Rome originally stood. It had been seized by Mussolini in 1937 and its return has been a long-running saga. The 25-metre-high obelisk was finally flown into Axum in three sections, between 19 and 25 April, and was greeted with major celebrations (above). The hope is that it will be re-erected by October.
Real Old Stony Suff Ping.
Who would have thought Ethiopia had the technology to build a parking lot.
Ethiopia, some troops fighting *with spears*, came within a hair's width of defeating Italy.
On October 3, 1935, Italy attacked Ethiopia from Eritrea and Italian Somaliland without a declaration of war. On October 7, the League of Nations unanimously declared Italy an aggressor but took no effective action.
In a war that lasted seven months, Ethiopia was outmatched by Italy in armaments--a situation exacerbated by the fact that a League of Nations arms embargo was not enforced against Italy. Despite a valiant defense, the next six months saw the Ethiopians pushed back on the northern front and in Harerge. Acting on long-standing grievances, a segment of the Tigray forces defected, as did Oromo forces in some areas. Moreover, the Italians made widespread use of chemical weapons and air power. On March 31, 1936, the Ethiopians counterattacked the main Italian force at Maychew but were defeated. By early April 1936, Italian forces had reached Dese in the north and Harer in the east. On May 2, Haile Selassie left for French Somaliland and exile--a move resented by some Ethiopians who were accustomed to a warrior emperor. The Italian forces entered Addis Ababa on May 5. Four days later, Italy announced the annexation of Ethiopia.
On June 30, Haile Selassie made a powerful speech before the League of Nations in Geneva in which he set forth two choices--support for collective security or international lawlessness. The emperor stirred the conscience of many and was thereafter regarded as a major international figure. Britain and France, however, soon recognized Italy's control of Ethiopia. Among the major powers, the United States and the Soviet Union refused to do so.
In early June 1936, Rome promulgated a constitution bringing Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Italian Somaliland together into a single administrative unit divided into six provinces. On June 11, 1936, Marshal Rodolfo Graziani replaced Marshal Pietro Badoglio, who had commanded the Italian forces in the war. In December the Italians declared the whole country to be pacified and under their effective control. Ethiopian resistance nevertheless continued.
After a failed assassination attempt against Graziani on February 19, 1937, the colonial authorities executed 30,000 persons, including about half of the younger, educated Ethiopian population. This harsh policy, however, did not pacify the country. In November 1937, Rome therefore appointed a new governor and instructed him to adopt a more flexible line. Accordingly, large-scale public works projects were undertaken. One result was the construction of the country's first system of improved roads. In the meantime, however, the Italians had decreed miscegenation to be illegal. Racial separation, including residential segregation, was enforced as thoroughly as possible. The Italians showed favoritism to non-Christian Oromo (some of whom had supported the invasion), Somali, and other Muslims in an attempt to isolate the Amhara, who supported Haile Selassie.
Ethiopian resistance continued, nonetheless. Early in 1938, a revolt broke out in Gojam led by the Committee of Unity and Collaboration, which was made up of some of the young, educated elite who had escaped the reprisal after the attempt on Graziani's life. In exile in Britain, the emperor sought to gain the support of the Western democracies for his cause but had little success until Italy entered World War II on the side of Germany in June 1940. Thereafter, Britain and the emperor sought to cooperate with Ethiopian and other indigenous forces in a campaign to dislodge the Italians from Ethiopia and from British Somaliland, which the Italians seized in August 1940, and to resist the Italian invasion of Sudan. Haile Selassie proceeded immediately to Khartoum, where he established closer liaison with both the British headquarters and the resistance forces within Ethiopia.
Bedamned. Next the Egyptians will want the one from the Place de la Concorde.
Criminal Number 18F
Heck...I'm kinda amazed they had an arcade back then. Maybe really really early PONG.
Ethiopia is one of only two African countries that were never colonized (and the other one, Liberia, shouldn't really count since it was formed by freed slaves returning from the US during the diaspora ...hence technically Ethiopia is literally the only African nation that was never colonized). Ethiopia literally destroyed the Italian armies at the battle of Aduwa in 1896, and Italy (under Mussolini this time) invaded but was kicked out in 1941. And note that before this (all the way back to the 16th century) the Ethipian monarchy (which claims direct links to the Solomon dynasty ...and anyways the Ethiopians had the same knack as the Israelis for smacking the collective ar$e$ of anyone who tried to invade them) used to give an @$$ whooping to anyone who came close.
Oh, and as for 'building parking lots' I guess you have never seen some of the enormous coptic churces hewn out of solid rock in mountain sides, plus the various forts and coptic chapels huh?
IT WAS A JOKE
Ethiopia is the home of an Ancient and respected civilization.
The Ethiopian Orthodox Church is one of the oldest Christian Churches and Ethiopia was one of the first countries to adopt Chrisitianity as its State Religion.
Before Ethiopia was Christian, there is evidence that it was a Jewish nation.
Ethiopia is also the home of some remarkable churches - carved right of the living rock in their entirety.
Many people, including this author, believes the original Ark of the Covenent is in the Ethiopian Church of St. Mary in Axum, having been spirited out of the Holy of Holies in the Temple of King Solomon in Jerusalem by Levite Priests, when evil King Manaesseh polluted it with pagan images and sacrifices.
According to the Kebra Nagast, the Queen of Sheba came from Ethiopia and her son Menelek was the son of King Solomon and the founder of the Dynasty of Kings who ruled Ethiopia until the Communists murdered the last Christian Monarch, Haile Selassie, God bless his soul.
Thanks for that. Ethiopia is agreat nation and the Ethiopians are a great people.
Thank God that monster Mengistu is dead.
I read somewhere that one of the reasons the Copts survived in Egypt whne the Muslims took over was threats by the Christian Ethiopians to cut off the water from the Nile if the Muslims wiped them out.
Forgive me for asking but it sounds like this site of interest is in a large town or city, so what if the ethiopians don't want a glorified graverobbing expedition disrupting their lives. Sorry if is sound unrefined. I know learning from the past is important, but what will really be learned from an excavation besides the particular customs of the people that lived in this specific area?
Whoever understands the past, controls the future.
This is probably to the Ethiopians what Gettysburg and Ticonderoga are to us.
As a Christian, I look forward to finding more information about the history of this, one of the first Christian nations on earth.
Read in AM - Amazing history. Thanks. :-)
Perhaps I should explain a little better. I just want to know what the ethical guidelines are for archeologists. I know I wouldn't want people in the future digging up my grave it all they learn from it is what I wore at formal events. Not that I have to worry about it though as I plan to be cremated, you know, so I don't take up space.
I think Archaeologists are guided by the laws of the nations in which they operate.
In Egypt provisions are made in the event people have to be relocated as a result of excavation. In other instances excavations are not conducted or are conducted beneath existing structures without damaging them.
I don't believe people are simply kicked out or privaye property simply confiscated without repayment today.
Its not the 1800's. Archaeology isn't Heinrich SChliemen digging trenches through mounds anymore. Its becmoe a quite sophisticated science employing very refined techniques.